Feeling the need to escape your daily routine? Living in a big city can be quite challenging, as there is always too much going on and so little time. Going away for three days to discover a remote but beautiful country could be everything you need right now.
Iceland’s popularity has come to an all-time high this year and with good reason. The beautiful landscapes and geological treasures on the island are sights you simply cannot get anywhere else in the world: From the luminous Northern Lights to active volcanoes, the places you can see just outside the capital Reykjavík are simply mesmerising.
The challenge Voice of London faced was to pick and choose the best sights and activities you can do in Iceland in just three days. There is plenty to discover, to the point that most travelers would tell us to stay for at least six days, but again as Londoners, we are always in a hurry: “So much to do and so little time”. An escape to Iceland for a weekend will make you appreciate our beautiful planet, see more than concrete and recharge your batteries.
Return flights from London to Keflavík, Iceland International Airport just outside the capital Reykjavík, can cost you about 80£ with a good online rate. Accommodation starts from about 20£ per night at Hostels or you can stay at more luxurious and comfortable Hotels if money is no issue. Next thing to plan is how are we spending three days in this beautiful country!
A place that you must visit when in Iceland is the Blue Lagoon. Admission to the site, which is also a luxury Spa, is not cheap and it will cost you about 80£ standard ticket, but you can spend as much time as you like in the Lagoon and the Spa provides you with complementary clay masks, which are mineralised and good for the skin.
After spending the day in the Blue Lagoon, you can go hunting for the Northern Lights at night. The best time of the year to catch this beautiful phenomenon is from November to February, which are the months with the most hours of darkness. However, do not think that if you go during these months you will definitely see them, as they are not very predictable and appear when mother nature wants them to. I have to warn you that it gets extremely cold at night, so wearing thermal clothes if you are going to stay outside is a must.
This day you can spend visiting the Golden Circle, a famous route that takes you from Reykjavík to the most beautiful sights of Iceland while circling back to the capital. Calculate that you will spend about 10 hours on the road and in the main sites, which are: Thingvellir National Park, Gullfoss Waterfalls and The Great Geysir and geothermal fields.
Thingvellir National Park is located in a rift valley caused by the separation of 2 tectonic plates: the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates. This results in huge rocky cliffs and fissures like the Almannagjá fault.
A couple of hours from there are the Gullfoss Waterfalls, an amazing sight you cannot miss and is also a great place to take photos.
Making your way back to Reykjavík comes the last stop of the day: The Great Geysir and geothermal fields. In more simpler terms, water is being boiled by lava under the ground, this causes steam to appear from the soil and water to come out of the ground in what can be best described as a water explosion. It’s simply amazing to watch!
On the last day you can relax in the city, which is quite picturesque, it has the appeal of a small fishing village. You can take some time to try some traditional Icelandic dishes, fermented shark being one of them! But if you don’t have the stomach don’t worry; even the Icelandic folk don’t like it and they warn tourists not to eat it, as “It’s just for the brave”, they say.
After spending three days in this beautiful country, you will not want to come back to reality. Apart of the great natural site, the people of Iceland are very nice and welcoming, you’ll feel like you belonged there all along. Make sure to book your tickets in advance so you get the best deals online. If not today, when?
Words, pictures and video: Kate Reichardt I Subbing: Katherine Docherty
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